Exercise Library
Back Extension Hold

The back extension hold is a simple exercise for isometric back extension strength and stamina.
In a GHD or back extension machine, extend the hips and back completely and hold for the prescribed time. The exercise can be loaded with a barbell, dumbbell or plate held behind the neck—don’t hold weights at the chest because it prevents the upper back from extending completely, which is an important part of the exercise.
The back extension hold is an easy way to improve stamina in the back extensors to help maintain desired posture in other exercises, or to strengthen the ability to maintain that back arch if loading with additional resistance.
The back extension hold can be done unweighted for durations of moderate effort as part of a warm-up to prepare the trunk, or for extended durations and/or with additional resistance at the end of training sessions. 3-4 sets 1-3 days/week is plenty.
The back extension hold can be done with a complete arch (as shown in video) or in a position closer to a neutral spine position depending on the needs of the athlete.